Sun Temple Food Recipes

  • Gluten Free Brownies: Pumpkin and Ginger

    Gluten Free Brownies
    When we first moved back to St. Lucia 16 years ago from the UK, we immediately began looking for a piece of land upon which to build our home. Our children were still young (10, 10 and 4) and we dreamed of creating a space that would in time become the family home of the Waters clan. There is no shortage of available land in St. Lucia, a lot of it with stunningly beautiful views. St. Lucia truly is beautiful. A friend of ours who was selling up and leaving to move back to the States had the most beautiful tract of land which we were compelled to buy. Problem was, it was a whole heap bigger than the original plot we had envisioned. Now, we were not just building our family home, we had become property developers.

    This land had never been used since the second world war when an antenna was built on the highest point, so it was covered in scraggly bush about chest high. Mark hired a team of men to clear the land so we could see what in fact we had bought, but in quick time realised that they were taking advantage of his proper European manners, so he sacked them all. One little, wiry man who could barely speak English hung back and told Mark in a mixture of sign language and actual words that he could do the job on his own if given the chance. Mark agreed as frankly what was there to lose?

    To cut a long story short, Nick, aka “Nick the bushman” moved onto the hill, a little house was built for him and Mark would bring him water and provisions as needed, and he did indeed succeed in taming the hill which is now a beautiful development of gorgeous houses.

    The reason I have told you about Nick is that he always had a pumpkin vine on the go, somewhere out of the way and unlikely to be damaged by construction. The huge pumpkin I used in a creamy chicken curry recipe was given to me by him, along with various other treasures through the years. I thought of Nick when I sat to write this.

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    Gluten Free Brownies Recipe –  Makes 18 

    400g (14 oz) pumpkin puree (drained if steaming fresh)

    100g (3.5 oz) raw almonds

    100g (3.5 oz) dates

    80g (1/2 c) rice flour

    70ml (6tbsp) maple syrup or coconut nectar

    80g (8 tbsp) raw cacao

    20g (1 tbsp) grated fresh ginger

    1/2 tsp salt

    P1090194

    You need to work backwards from the pureed weight of the pumpkin. This is of course if you, like me, are starting with the raw vegetable. You will need about 4 cups raw pumpkin cut into cubes and then steamed. Once it is soft, tip into a strainer and let the water drain off. You might need to catch this for adding any needed moisture later and if not then for adding to a soup or stock as its all good.

    While the pumpkin is steaming and then draining, start by chopping the almonds quite small in the food processor. You need to be a bit careful because if you go too far you will end up releasing the oil in the nuts and you’re halfway to making delicious almond nut butter. Not such a disaster but not the skill we want here. Add the dates and continue to blitz. Once you have an even “meal” add the maple syrup, cocoa, ginger, rice flour and salt. The consistency should be smooth and easily spreadable. If its looking a bit dry to you, then add some of your pumpkin water.

    Baked Brownies  - Gluten Free

    I used ready cut cake pan inserts of wax paper, but you could line your baking dish as you see fit remembering that the best result is achieved with some sort of lining rather than just greased.

    Cook the brownies in a 180°C (350°F) oven for about 30 minutes until the top starts to get a lovely brownish caramel look to it.

    Cut into squares (or indeed whatever shape takes your fancy) and enjoy with a cup of tea/coffee or maybe even a rum punch.

    Gluten free brownies on a plate

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    Gluten Free Brownies: Pumpkin and Ginger

    Gluten Free Brownies: Pumpkin and Ginger

    Ingredients

    • 400g (14 oz) pumpkin puree (drained if steaming fresh)
    • 100g (3.5 oz) unbalanced raw almonds
    • 100g (3.5 oz) dates
    • 80g (1/2 c) rice flour
    • 70ml (6tbsp) maple syrup or coconut nectar
    • 80g (8 tbsp) raw cacao
    • 20g (1 tbsp) grated fresh ginger
    • 1/2 tsp salt

    Instructions

    1. You will need about 4 cups raw pumpkin cut into cubes and then steamed.
    2. Once it is soft, tip into a strainer and let the water drain off.
    3. You might need to catch this for adding any needed moisture later and if not then for adding to a soup or stock as its all good.
    4. While the pumpkin is steaming and then draining, start by chopping the almonds quite small in the food processor.
    5. You need to be a bit careful because if you go too far you will end up releasing the oil in the nuts and you’re halfway to making delicious almond nut butter.
    6. Add the dates and continue to blitz. Once you have an even “meal” add the maple syrup, cocoa, ginger, rice flour and salt.
    7. The consistency should be smooth and easily spreadable. If its looking a bit dry to you, then add some of your pumpkin water.
    8. I used ready cut cake pan inserts of wax paper, but you could line your baking dish as you see fit remembering that the best result is achieved with some sort of lining rather than just greased.
    9. Cook the brownies in a 180°C (350°F) oven for about 30 minutes until the top starts to get a lovely brownish caramel look to it.
    10. Cut into squares (or indeed whatever shape takes your fancy) and enjoy with a cup of tea/coffee or maybe even a rum punch.

     

16 comments on “
  1. cheryl renwick says:

    you go Germaine so proud of you

  2. Not Bread bread… Hey Germaine, I’ve just tried to make your “not bread loaf”, and have had serious issues with it. Made the dough no problem, left it rest overnight as per the suggestion, and cooked it for 30 mins at 180 degrees F.
    It is not even warm on the base off the pan, far less for getting it out to turn it upside down. Is the baking temp. incorrect in the recipe? Is it degrees F or C?
    Is 30 mins and then another 30 mins correct?
    It’s going in the bin for sure, so I have just upped the temp to 375 to see if it will actually bake or not… What did I do wrong? Claudette

    • Germaine says:

      Sorry Claudette. I have just looked and realised that I omitted to put the F/C for the temp. Is it indeed Celsius. I’ve updated it now. If you have a silicone loaf pan you could leave it in there for the whole hour without tipping out onto a baking sheet. So….you did nothing wrong. It was just unclear directions.

  3. Marijke says:

    Germaine, we have met you last thursday afternoon at your home with David.

    Thank you for sharing your family home with us; the deep warmth you do share with your family was surely and strongly felt…

    The picture of you as a child is darling; you were a happy kid in a happy, loving environment, and because of your loving parents you are still beaming this happiness out today…

    You are connected with Mother Earth and you appreciate the food she provides for you…in turn she has given you the opportunity to be creative and sustain your temple with healthy and delicious food….
    You are an inspiration for all of us and thank you so wonderfully for sharing all these delicious recipes with us…
    It is a delight to see and above all a joy to taste them…

    • Germaine says:

      Thank you so much for all your kind words Marijke. It was a pleasure to meet you and your husband and to show off my family home. I wish you had seen it under a more calm situation.

  4. Mae says:

    I just cooked my cauliflower mash! Huge success. Thanks to you I’m learning to cook.

  5. Pancho says:

    Nice site G! A crucial part of becoming food independent is getting people to enjoy cooking locally grown food and making it TASTE GOOD. This is a good way to do just that. Keep the information coming.

    • Germaine says:

      Thanks so much Pancho! We must talk and get this word spread! We have such a wealth of indigenous raw materials. I’m loving this journey.

  6. Looks so delicious and I am sure great flavors with the peppery rocket and sweetness of orange zest and dried apricots. A lovely summer side dish!

  7. Alison Ritchie says:

    Loved this salad. I used black rice as Waitrose had no red and it tasted lovely.

  8. Alison Ritchie says:

    Sorry, no! But it did look rather good with the black rice and bright green rocket and orange apricots. Out of interest have you ever thought about giving a rough indication of calories? Mind you the food is so nice I always eat two portions which doesn’t help the waistline!!!

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